I apologize for the long narrative! But I want to give a complete picture.
I would love to hear your thoughts, feedback, comments, suggestions, and recommendation on this. I work for a software company, specifically the Professional Services part of the company. Like many Consulting companies, we have a Matrix based organization. Until 5 years back, we had the Deliver Manager role, which served the functional manager role. At that time, we had about 100 Consultants total including PM, Technical, and Business Analyst roles. We had about 10 Deliver Managers, each managing about 10 Consultants. The division was based on industry vertical but we also had horizontal teams. When Consultants were on projects, they also 'reported' to Project Managers. This model was working well from a functional manager to employee relationship stand-point. The Delivery Managers were primarly non-billable and it was hurting our bottom line. So our executive management team decide to get rid of the Deliver Manager role and introduced what's called the "Coaches". The idea was to basically find top performing Consultants (mostly senior Consultants) and give them managerial responsibilities. Each Coach was assigned anywhere between 1-4 Coachees. Coaches were responsible for their Coachees Career progression, provide necessary support/mentoring, handle adminstrative tasks. Coaches did not have any financial responsibilities. No financial information (salary, bonus, equity) were shared with the Coaches.
We had a multi-tier coaching structure. The top level coaches were reporting to Delivery Directors. We had 3. Few senior Consultants understood the role very well and started mentoring their Coachees. The relationship flourished. But for most of the Consultants, the model did not work. They missed the manager-employee relationship. They did not even know what their Coaches role was.
Now, we have over 300 Consultants. The model still remains. However, we now have a new role called the Consulting Manager. I am one of the new Consulting Managers. We have about 8 Consulting Managers now. The 7 other Consulting Managers have about 15-25 Team members. I have about 120 Consultants in my team. I have 10 direct Coachees' and each of them have anywhere between 2-4 Coachees. The model currently is 4 levels deep. My relationship with my direct Coachees are great. However, I still see a lot of struggle in the levels below. Since Coaches don't have Managerial responsibility or authority, they don't feel like they can make any changes. Since they are not getting compensted for being a Coach, they don't have any motivation.
Bottom-line, Consultants feel like they are in an island without being connected, without being recognized, without having a Manager to help them.
Do any of you have this model in your organization? Is it working well? If so, do you have any recommendations? Has anyone heard of this model? What can we do to make this model better?
With 300 Consultants, we can't have all Consultants report directly to the Consulting Managers. How can we make this model work?
Any thoughts/suggestions/recommendations on this is greatly appreciated.
Again, my apologies for the long narrative.